Is Getting Drunk In the Side Yard of a House ''Public Intoxication'' ?

In Banda v. State, 890 S.W.2d 42 (Tex. Crim. App. 1994), a capital murder prosecution, the defendant claimed there was no probable cause to arrest him for public intoxication because the "place" where he was actually arrested, the side yard of his cousin's house, was "private" because it was a private residence. Id. at 52. The facts, however, showed that when the police arrived at his cousin's residence to question the defendant in a murder investigation, the defendant fled out the back door and jumped a fence into a neighbor's yard. Id. at 49. An extensive search by numerous police officers throughout the entire neighborhood during the course of an hour was fruitless, until several officers returned to the cousin's house to see if the defendant may have returned. Id. At this time the police apprehended the defendant in the side yard. The only reasonable conclusion was that the defendant had fled private property and evaded the police by using public property. Id. at 52.